[photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty]
Yesterday’s Apple press conference had all sorts of interesting announcements, from the release of Apple’s virtual wallet (called Apple Pay) to the first public preview of the Apple Watch. There was also one fun announcement for those Apple fans who don’t have as much disposable income to buy a brand new iPhone with a two-year cell phone contract. The band U2 put up their new album for free for all iTunes users. [photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty]
The long press conference in Cupertino, California concluded with a performance by U2 live on stage, and Apple CEO Tim Cook came out of the shadows to announce with the group’s lead singer Bono that the entire album Songs of Innocence is now on iTunes. It’s also completely free to anyone with an iTunes account in 119 countries. It’s available now on the iTunes store simply by searching for the band’s name. You’ll see that it’s already been purchased for you so all you have to do is download it from your iTunes library.
iTunes has over 800 million users, according to the latest account we could find on the subject. So by giving away an album that’s sure to sell millions of copies, that technically means that U2 has already sold 800 million records with the simple push of a single button. So does that mean that U2 has already set themselves up for a Diamond album certification with the Record Industry Association of America? That’s the highest sales honor a record can receive, and that only takes selling a mere 10 million records.
Sadly, most people are thinking that U2 has pretty much given up any kind of official album sales offer by that little stunt. The good news is that U2 just got a lot of publicity for a tour that will bring in a major fortune, and the band owns their own publishing. Albums sales are an afterthought to a band like U2 nowadays–but we still hope they claim Songs of Innocence is an honorary Quadruple Diamond Album, anyway.
At least Quadruple Diamond, right? And that’s not counting Youtube users…